Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Caledon in Blue Mars

Well, I suppose I can finally talk about this now...

Desmond Shang has announced Caledonia, Caledon's "colony" in Blue Mars. Reactions about the upcoming 4 million sq m Caledonia have ranged from "What?!" to "Oooo" to "Whatever." Its preview will be available in a few days. As Caledon is one of SL's significant "showcase" regions and he is one of its most well-known land owners, this is a big deal.

I've been a part of this project since May and for me, it has been interesting to see the evolution of a brand new virtual world. I've been exploring Blue Mars in general due to the fact that checking out other virtual worlds is what I like to do. I will not sit here and tout it as the end all to be all, because as I have said in previous posts, it still has quite a long way to go until it's truly ready for primetime. In the meantime though, it is the possibility of what it can do that is intriguing.

Will Blue Mars be a SL killer? No. I don't think so. SL has more danger of killing themselves off due to their company's practices and general perception than another virtual world popping up. And I seriously doubt SL is going to go anywhere for quite a while. Its draw--as it was for me and for others who are content creators--is still the ability for anyone to be able to make something using its built-in tools. I've always loved SL and still believe in its possibilities as well. Those who like SL will continue to be in SL, or they might be like me and check out both worlds. Right now, the two worlds are like apples and oranges and it's still way too early to guess at an impact one way or the other. In the meantime, can't blame a person for checking out the other options out there.


Rhianon Jameson said...

I'm in the "ooooh" camp, though, as you say, Blue Mars doesn't seem quite ready for prime time (or didn't when I last visited).

If the muse so moves you, what are some of the differences that make the comparison apples and oranges?

Eladrienne Laval said...

For those of us who are used to SL, I think they are visiting Blue Mars expecting it to work just like it. "In SL..." is something you hear a lot of, but in the end, Blue M is not SL. To me, the two could be complementary to one another.

Despite all of our fussing and the craziness that our LiLa overlords roll out, SL still has some kinks more smoothed out at the moment. Blue M has an edge graphics-wise because of the CryEngine, but like SL, to me it's hard on graphic cards too.

One advantage that it will have over SL though is that the avatar limit is not an issue. You can have full-scale events.

You want to know what I really think though? Both SL & Blue M and online VWs/games that need large downloads and graphic card resources should keep an eye on things like Unity and Flash-based MMOs. Like netbooks--unless you are a power user--"less" could become important. Ease of accessibility and mobility in gaming--MMOs included--might be the future.

HeadBurro Antfarm said...

It's looking good! What was your contribution, matey?

As for VWs, I think mobility is the key too - when I can get SL on my phone and actually do stuff there with it, a HUGE threshold will have been crossed. I give it 2 - 3 years at most for phones capable of really complex 3D programs to be up to the job. An issue for me might be size of screen & how to operate the software, but these are minor gripes based on today's tech.

Eladrienne Laval said...

HBA, I am still doing clothing design and figuring out the process for it. I can also build as well, but design has been my focus so far so that'll have to wait. It's been a bit of a learning curve, as it uses 3D tools like Blender and Maya, etc., but I am excited about the creative challenge.

And an addendum about AV limits that came out today, as it seems you can have big events--if your sim/city supports it. Right now the view is limited to 50 AVs. More info about that here: